The Saiga comes standard with what appears to be sufficient area in front of the sight block to thread a muzzle brake in place. The barrel length on the standard Saiga rifle is 16", so I assume I can thread the end of the barrel and install a muzzle break in that area without actually reducing the length of the barrel so the rifle is still legal. If not, please advise.
But, I also want to possibly take things a little further, and install a sight block that will accommodate a bayonet. I've noticed that some companies offer an AK74 sight block with what appears to be a bayonet mount, similar to # 74FSB571, available from Dinzag, among others...
I've read where the sight block on the older Saigas was pinned, but that the new ones are coming in dimpled instead of pinned. Pinned seems like it would be much easier to deal with. But, dimpled seems like it could be much more difficult to remove without ruining the barrel. I wouldn't necessarily care if I dinged up the old sight block in the process, since I'll probably just throw it in the parts bin. But, I DO NOT want to mess up the barrel in the process.
Is there any danger that you might drill into the barrel trying to drill out the dimples to get the stock sight block off there? The Dinzag product looks like the new sight block is pinned. Not sure if there are any Federal Regulations concerning permanence of installation, pinned versus welded, etc...with respect to the sight block.
Need some guidance...Thanks in advance!
If your rifle's year of manufacture is 2009, you may already have a threaded barrel under the front sight block barrel shroud. Some of the 7.62 x 39 Saiga rifles that year had military barrels: the barrels were threaded, and had the handguard retainer slots already milled in the proper place. The receivers on these rifles also usually had mag dimples, but a few did not.
I don't really know about any prior or successive years' barrels. Others may.
If you just want threads, and don't want to change out the FSB, get a good light source and carefully examine the end of the muzzle under the shroud. You many be able to determine if threads are present. Only the beginning of the first thread "may" be visible. Take a sharp awl or very pointy object and try running the point around the "joint" between muzzle and shroud. The factory may have used "goop" under the shroud. If threads are visible, get a good quality pipe cutter and you can slowly cut off about 5/8" of the shroud. Alternatively, you could try your luck with a Dremel and cut-off wheel. Just be very, very careful with the Dremel. It is one of finest tools known to man, or the very worst creation of the fiends of Hell!!!
If you don't get lucky and have threads, you will need a TAT and die (available from many different vendors)
Also, here is a link to a good Saiga Conversion tutorial. http://www.cross-conn.com/Saiga_Conversion/
If you have a "dimpled-on" FSB, the easiest way to remove it is to use the wonderful/dreaded Dremel and cut-off wheel and cut a slot down each side of the FSB (cutting through the dimpled dots) ALMOST
all the way through. Leave just a hair of metal next to the barrel. Then, using a BFH, CRACK the FSB by putting a DULL chisel point in the groove and smack it good, hard enough to crack the remaining metal. Not so hard as to bend your barrel!!