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    King unknown user's Avatar
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    Question noobie builder questions

    I'm a noobie AK builder, but I'm familiar with AK's and I own several. I'm also an experienced welder and sheet metal worker, but I'm not much of a machinist, so a kit build looks to me like something I can accomplish.

    I've always wanted to build my own AK, and I want an AK pistol. With the barrel ban raising prices and slashing supply it looks like my last chance to give this a try is coming up. I'm going to be shopping for supplies at the next gunshow, but I've questions about what to buy and I'm hoping y'all can help.

    Can I build a pistol off a romanian kit if I get a short gas piston for it and shorten the gas tube? I have a cheap drill press and a welder so I think I can relocate the gas hole, will I need a lathe to shorten the barrel or will a bandsaw work? Also, is there anything I should be looking out for when buying one of these kits?

    I like the flat concept more than the bent blank one. I've been reading around here and it looks like the 1mm tapco flat is a good choice. What's with the trunion holes vs no trunion holes, why would I want to drill my own trunion holes? It looks like 1mm flats are the easiest to work with, 1.6mm flats are a bit narrow on the inside and require some machining of parts to fit inside. Am I right on all of this, should I be looking for 1mm flats with trunion holes?

    Thanks!

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    Gunco Good ole boy kernelkrink's Avatar
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    If you are wanting to shorten a standard bbl you will have to move the gas block back and use a shorter gas tube and piston. Do a search, there was somebody doing the shortening process on the whole front end for people. While you *can* do it all by hand or with a bandsaw, a lathe makes it much easier.

    Building from a flat, no trunnion holes is usually best. Every country located their holes slightly differently, some may even differ between examples of the same model. No holes lets you drill them precisely where they should be instead of possibly having to egg shape them to line up with your trunnions. If you are bending from a flat, the inside measurement should be the same regardless of thickness, you are the one bending them so you decide what the ID will be.

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    I assumed that when bending a flat the width would be pre-determined, if the bottom was too wide/narrow the holes would be located in the wrong place and the trigger would sit too high/low. How does this not happen, is the width difference not enough to make a significant change in the alignment?

    I'm planning on using the poor man's bending jig with a hammer because I don't have a press. I think 1mm flats would be preferred for this as they'd be easier to bend.

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    Friend of MCMXI Preacher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kernelkrink
    Do a search, there was somebody doing the shortening process on the whole front end for people.
    That was Droog. And here's his thread.

    Gonna try a real short one.
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    Gunco Regular MoonShiner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kernelkrink
    Building from a flat, no trunnion holes is usually best. Every country located their holes slightly differently, some may even differ between examples of the same model. No holes lets you drill them precisely where they should be instead of possibly having to egg shape them to line up with your trunnions.
    A very thin ray of hope has me inclined to believe he's not going to use the bullshit rivet method ! He's mentioned a couple of times that he has a welder. Is it possible that he could be thinking about welding the rifle together ?

    So what's the skinny here, Unknown User ?
    Я люблю работать с очень большими молотками
    Yuh nah waste out yuh chance fi paint di town red,
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    Gunco Good ole boy kernelkrink's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by unknown user
    I assumed that when bending a flat the width would be pre-determined, if the bottom was too wide/narrow the holes would be located in the wrong place and the trigger would sit too high/low. How does this not happen, is the width difference not enough to make a significant change in the alignment?

    I'm planning on using the poor man's bending jig with a hammer because I don't have a press. I think 1mm flats would be preferred for this as they'd be easier to bend.
    As long as the spatial relationship *between* the hammer and trigger holes are the same, a slight variation in height would not matter much. Now, you might wind up with the trigger hole too low and be on/below the bend depending on the individual flat and jig used. That would be a problem, which I did not fully consider before. A lot depends on the radius of the bend. If you are using the poor man's bending jig, 1mm is the way to go in that case.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MoonShiner
    A very thin ray of hope has me inclined to believe he's not going to use the bullshit rivet method ! He's mentioned a couple of times that he has a welder. Is it possible that he could be thinking about welding the rifle together ?

    So what's the skinny here, Unknown User ?
    I was planning on riviting it together with the bolt cutter method for an authentic style. I've never heard of welding together an AK.

    Thanks everyone for the quick answers.

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    Gunco Member TheOtherChris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by unknown user
    I was planning on riviting it together with the bolt cutter method for an authentic style. I've never heard of welding together an AK.

    Thanks everyone for the quick answers.
    Before I built a rivet squisher, I welded a couple just because I was impatient.
    The slick sides of the receiver are kinda cool though.
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    Always sore, always tired Bradrock's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by unknown user
    I was planning on riviting it together with the bolt cutter method for an authentic style. I've never heard of welding together an AK.

    Thanks everyone for the quick answers.

    Never heard of welding an AK??? So.........I suppose you've never heard of dragging one down the road behind your truck either?? MAN........Moonshiners got to learn you the finer points of "custom shop gunsmithing" Lets see if we can get him to chime in here and get another convert to the "RIGHT" way of doing things! Do you have a LARGE ANVIL?? & A BMF Hammer to go with it? Welcome to the forum......you have much to learn my friend!

    Moonshiner has convinced me to take the stupid gas tank off my mig welder and go back to the flux core i liked so much in the first place.! I BELIEVE!!!
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    Gunco Regular MoonShiner's Avatar
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    You're killin' me here Bradrock !
    Unknown User: If you've never heard of welding an AKM together, you're missing out ! A lot of people don't like doing it that way, mostly because it violates the principle of "shooter-grade" authenticity. Whatever the fuck that is.

    By welding it together, you can save yourself an ungodly amount of time and energy. Basically, you insert your trunion/barrel assembly into the receiver, and weld it in. Then take your rear trunion, and weld it in too. Install the trigger-pack, gas-tube, handguards, stock, bolt-carrier/bolt, top cover, and you're good to go. A regular fixed-stock AKM takes about 40 minutes to complete.

    I like the smooth-side (rivetless) look too, as TheOtherChris mentioned. So, my advice: Rid yourself of this rivet nonsense ! If you've got the skill and resources to weld one together, I would strongly recommend doing so. Feel free to wipe your ass with your Harbor Freight coupon This advice is worth exactly what it cost you (free), but... *shrug* It's your project, and should be done to your satisfaction.
    Я люблю работать с очень большими молотками
    Yuh nah waste out yuh chance fi paint di town red,
    Cause when yuh buss it up, a fi mek Babylon fled
    And uh respect rasta livety yuh nah dis no dread

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