Checking Interest: The New Defens Rivet Jig
I haven't worked on any AK builds in several years, moved on to other things - but after moving to a new house and setting up my shop with new machinery, I found a box of the bases and some other parts for these combination jigs that I was selling back in 2006 or so.
Does anyone have an interest in one of these jigs? - Read below for details. The jigs were pretty well received, particularly after a bit of redesign and upgrade of some of the rivet setting arms. If there's interest, I'll get some materials to finish building around 12-15 of these or so. PM me or reply to this post if interested.
I have no interest in getting into the business with these - just want to clear out existing parts inventory. If someone was interested in just buying a completed base and building their own arms, let's talk!
After a bit of prototyping and testing, here's my new design for a combination rivet jig that does both front and rear trunnion rivets for AK style rifles. The jig comes with the following components:
- Base unit, which accepts all of the riveting and clamping tools
- Clevis pin, retainer, and spacers for attaching the rivet and clamping tools
- Three (3) rivet tools for setting the six (short) rivets in a standard AK front trunnion
- One clamping tool / guide fixture for clamping the receiver and rear trunnion in place to set long rear rivets
- One rear and center support rivet setter, which slides into the clamping/guiding fixture
- One instruction sheet
Here's the complete kit (you supply the hydraulic press). On several of the tools rivet is pressed with a hardened drill rod insert, which is replaceable if you ever wear it out.
This tool is designed to be used with a hydraulic press, such as the 12 or 20 ton presses sold by Harbor Freight and others. When used carefully, the jig will easily press all rivets into place without excessive pressure being needed. The jig can be damaged if you apply too much pressure to the lever arms, it's made of mild steel to keep the costs reasonable. Damaged parts can be replaced for a nominal fee. I have made a couple of slight changes in the design (the fitting where the wingnut screws into the base unit, and the long rivet setter has been shortened to reduce leverage) so the unit you receive won't look exactly like the photos.
In use, you decide which rivet you want to set, then select the proper tool to attach to the base unit. For front trunnion rivets, you attach all tools through the lower holes in the base unit. Complete instructions are provided to describe which tool is used to set which rivets.
Here's a shot of the setup to press one of the front trunnion rivets. Three tools are used to reach the six different rivets. The receiver being used in the photo was early experimentation, by the way - the rivets you see on top are mostly ground off so I can get the trunnion back out. The rivet heads produced by the jig are nice and round.
For rear rivets, attach the clamp/guide tool through the top set of holes. Place the "sandwich" of receiver, trunnion, and rivet with the factory-formed rivet head down, nestled in the recess of the bucking bar. Slide the whole package under the clamp and center the rivet end to be formed under the guide tube. Use the thumbscrew to clamp the whole assembly into place.
Now, insert the rivet setter into the guide tube. Press the rivet head using your hydraulic press. Everything is held tightly in alignment for you.
The jig has been tested with standard style (AMD, Hungarian) stamped receiver AKs. It has not been tested with the Yugo style receivers, nor has it been tested to set the short rivets for underfolding stocks, although it will likely work fine for both applications. If necessary, you can build your own tooling to use with the base unit for special applications.
The jig sells for $180, including shipping via flat rate Priority Mail. Since I have a day job and am building these in my spare time (for now) I don't want to get too backordered - it quite rightly irritates people if you take their money and don't deliver. Here's how I will handle ordering:
I will take 10 paid orders now - I have current inquiries from about 6 members here now, and those guys will get first refusal to place an order. PM me to place your order - I'll take PayPal and money orders only - and I'll reply with either PayPal account info or mailing address. I'll start building jigs immediately, and anticipate that the first ten will all be completed and shipped within two weeks. BTW - please include your email address with your PM, I'll be able to contact you directly then with regular status updates.
Those who don't get to actually place their order will go onto a waiting list (in order), and as I ship jigs out I'll contact you to see if you're still interested. If so, we'll arrange payment, so that I never have more than 10 paid orders (about two weeks work) sitting in front of me at any one time. Hopefully this will avoid the issues folks have had in the past with money out of pocket, waits of several months, and no word from the vendor.
I wish I had a few pallets of these sitting, ready to ship, but unfortunately, this is the quickest way I could figure to start filling the jig void that's out there. Depending on demand, I figure I'll probably make 50 of these, before I have to take a break! :)
Status update: June 6
I'll be getting started on the second batch of these jigs within the next week. There will be an upgrade in materials - the press arms will be made of 4340 or 4140 steel and be heat treated. The cost will have to increase somewhat to cover this expense, although I'm not going to pass the full cost of materials + heat treatment along. New cost will probably be $200 + shipping. I'll also be including an attachment to dimple the receivers for swell-neck rivets. Underfolder rivet arms will be an option.
If you'd like a jig out of the next batch, please PM me. I don't want to accept funds quite yet, but will start doing so when we're about 2 weeks out from shipping.
Update - Oct. 31, 2006
I've been doing some redesign and updates to the original jib, based on feedback from my customers. The jig works very well, but I've redesigned the press arm and will also be making it of heat treated tool steel for strength and longevity. Also, I'm planning to powder coat the base for an improved finish.
I'll be building ten jigs of my new Gen. 2 model, which should be shipping out shortly before Thanksgiving. I'll be building a second batch of about 2 dozen after that.
I'm currently building bases, and expect to start taking preorders next week. The jigs will ship as soon as the press arms are built and return from the heat treater (the only part that I don't do in-house).
Price for the new updated jig is $210, including shipping. If you have a Gen.1 jig and would like to upgrade to the new press arm, please PM me and I'll make some spares and let you know the price.
For additional info click here.
Production Update for guys who preordered
I made a lot of progress these last few days. Got all the pieces cut, marked, drilled, milled, etc. to make the base units, and today I welded them together and painted them.
Tomorrow I'll get the clamping units done, and all that will remain is to start making the press arms. I need to pick up some more steel for these, but I have enough to get me started tomorrow. I will most likely start shipping on Tuesday or Wednesday to the first guys on the preorder list, a couple days earlier than I'd anticipated. They will all be shipped before the end of the week, assuming that the flat stock I need is availabe (it should be, it's a normal size.)
I've started the list of interested folks for Batch #2 - will start taking orders when the current batch is done and shipped.