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Page AK-47 » Build It Yourself
AK Sponsor: palmetto
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Posted: 4/29/2003 6:26:27 PM EST
I am looking into building an AK47.  I would be using sgtfreedom.com's blank and template.  What kind of kit should be baught to make this functional.  Where can I get premade rails?  Yes I know how to rivet.  I am not worried about cutting the blank just worried about getting the right parts.  I keep hearing something about pressing the trunion for headspace.  Will I have to do this?

Link Posted: 4/29/2003 7:43:02 PM EST
The best kits are from K-var and Global trades. I would recommend you get a fixed stock and rear trunion with screws to complete the rifle.  You cannot have an underfolder that works anyway.  Most kits come with the barrel pinned into the trunion. Some from K-var do not.  If the barrel is not in the trunion already, you will have to do the headspace.  It's not a real big deal, unless you do it wrong. So for the best of the best, A GT underfolder kit, trade the underfolder parts for stock, trunion and screws, which they probably will be happy to do when you order, and you'll have a fine AK.  The GT's AK has the barrel in the trunion already, last time I ordered one.  Check to be sure it's a preban barrel of you will have to get another from K-var.  Also remember to get your compliance parts...
  Premade rails are available from sksman, I believe he's listed as a supplier somewhere around the site.  Glad you can do rivets, they drive me crazy.  I'm not familure with Sgtfreedoms blank so I cannot advise you on it's useability.
Link Posted: 4/30/2003 2:36:00 AM EST
Link Posted: 4/30/2003 3:05:26 AM EST
Thanks a lot mg34ss you are a real help.  I am an aircraft mechanic so I do know a little about tools.  Will you let me email you with my progress and help me if I get stuck?  Also give me suggestions?  Thanks mg34ss!
Link Posted: 4/30/2003 3:53:40 AM EST


i applaud your initiative, but why pay $30 for that bent form (no where near 80%) instead of buying a 100% machined, heat treated receiver for $59?

good luck to you! get the drill press and mill fired up for some fun making chips!

sksman and k-var both sell the lower, internal rails. these are ordinarily spot welded in place, and i have known one or two guys to screw them in place.

Campy, do you have a link for 59$ heat treated receivers, the only 2 receivers i know are about are the OOW, that isnt fully treated, and the FEG, which is sold out.
any assistance would be welcomed.
im getting ready to have my first AK built, my kit is on the way, but i still need a decent receiver.
Link Posted: 4/30/2003 8:34:27 AM EST
Link Posted: 4/30/2003 11:31:21 AM EST
Sure EK, though from time to time I get tardy on responses.  The heat treat job you do will be the critical part of having a long lasting receiver.  Considering the work, pre-built receivers are the way to go, but like me, I think you want to be able to say, "Built it myself". Let me know how it goes.
Link Posted: 4/30/2003 12:01:13 PM EST
Campy...your suggestion to use rivets that are a shade longer than factory in order to use the barrel as the bucking bar makes sense.  It would certainly save a lot of work, I think.

Do you suppose the impact on the barrel would in some way "flow" the metal and result in some degradation in barrel performace?

And, how would someone go about digging the old rivet remnants out from beside the barrel?
Link Posted: 4/30/2003 12:17:07 PM EST
Geez.  Could someone explain all this to me?
bucking bar?
screwing the rails in, rather than welding them?
I don't see anh pre-made rails from www.sksman.com.  I'm pretty confused here.  Is there somewhere to read up on the process of building an AK on a stripped receiver and a kit?

Link Posted: 4/30/2003 12:59:57 PM EST
I hope I can find a kit with a trunion already installed on the barrel.  Then all I have to do is install it into the receiver.  I think I may go with the screw method.  That way I can take it apart from time to time to clean the whole dang thing.  What kind of screws/bolt's do you use?  How much do you torque them?  I already got a buddy that will let me barrow his mig welder for the rails.  Mg34ss I did plan on getting a fixed stock of dark brown wood if I can find one.  I am not familiar with AK's at all.

I am going to be smart and get my plans together before I buy anything.  I dont want to start cutting metal and such and say "uhh where does this go george!"

What about the rails also.  I need both left and right rails right?  Will the ones on sksman work?  One says AK (right) rail the other is AKM (left).
Link Posted: 4/30/2003 3:04:26 PM EST
My GT underfolder kit came in today, Im so excited. Now I just need the receiver to come in. The barrel was not pressed in but the kit is excellent shape. Im a little scared about riveting it together but im going to try. Besides welding the stock open and the parts count is there anything else I need to do to be legal? Im not going to ask the usual newbee questions until I read all the post I can find on building. I do have one ? I cant find the answer to, is the slant brake supposed to be clocked at 11(looking at the barrel from the front)?
Link Posted: 4/30/2003 3:39:08 PM EST
Here's what I've managed to do before getting mobbed.


Link Posted: 4/30/2003 5:06:22 PM EST
I am a little confused.  The only part that I am confused about is the barrel.  I will probably be ordering a parts kit from interordanace.  I am worried about the trunion not being installed on the barrel already.  Will the trunion have rivets already drilled out so all I have to do is put it in the receiver and rivet it with two rivets?
Link Posted: 4/30/2003 8:14:26 PM EST

If the new inner ordnance kits are like the last batch they had in and sold out of about a month ago, they are Romanian and the barrel is in the trunnion.   the parts are not matching, however, the condition is nearly new.

Hess receivers can be purchased from Joekan and for a few dollars more can save a considerable amount of labor.

The existing rivit can be drilled through. A 10/32 hole is possible however a 5 mm, 6 mm, or quarter inch tap is likely to be needed should there be any error. Cleaning the existing rivit out is a chore, however, there is a dead air space between the trunnion and barrel of about a 1/16'' which allows for the installation of a button head fastener which does not contact the barrel.

The fastener torque  would be the maximum you're comfortable with.  The threads should be embedded in  locktight to prevent the fastener from backing out.

Doing it this way avoids not only the pressing, but also the problems of headspace do not arise.

Building a AK is insane.  Even with your skills and access to equipment your labor will not be rewarded at minimum wage.

I can't understand why I Love It.  Good luck.
Link Posted: 5/1/2003 3:17:32 AM EST
You mean the threads I would be putting in there would help adjust headspace?  From what you are saying it seems if I can adjust headspace that way.  Do these rivets go stright through the trunion/barrel?  I am used to working with aluminum rivets.  I am prob going to drill/tap screws in.  How much material do I have to work with without damaging it.  Would aluminum alloy rivets be to soft for this.  Something like a 5606 rivet?  They are the hardest aluminum rivets that I know.  They have to be driven cold otherwise at room tempature they will cure and harden.
Link Posted: 5/1/2003 3:19:51 AM EST
BTW where can I find pictures of the barrel in the trunion but not mounted.  All the ones I see are far away and I cannot see the rivet holes.
Link Posted: 5/1/2003 10:08:20 AM EST
EK, patience, patience. All will be answered with time.  First, you need to get your kit in your hands.  Then all this will start to make sense. The trunion screws have nothing to do with the head-space.  There are three rivet, or if you prefer, screw holes on each side of the trunion.  They secure the trunion to the receiver.  They do not secure the barrel in the trunion.  That is done with a steel pin that is pressed in.  In mounting the trunion in the receiver, which do you think is best for strength, soft aluminum rivets, soft mild steel rivets, or grade 8 hardened button head cap screws? I think that needs no explanation. It really isn't hard to do.  You have the experience to do this. Look around here and elsewhere and you will find what you need.  You will need sksman's rails. One each side. Get these ordered, get your kit ordered ( you should get the global kit, it's in stock and I/O's kit is not, also they will substitute buttstocks and I/O probably will not, globals is probably new, I/O's is not, and you get what you pay for.  Saving $40 will not matter in the long run if you get lesser quality parts.) But you can do as you wish.
Link Posted: 5/1/2003 1:46:13 PM EST
mg34ss I have ordered my receiver and I ordered two rails.  Did I order the right rails?  I ordered the AK right rail and the AKM left rail.  Will both of these work?  Should I have ordered two right AK rails?
Link Posted: 5/2/2003 8:30:29 AM EST
Yes, you needed a right and a left.
Link Posted: 5/2/2003 5:26:10 PM EST
I do not plan on taking the barrel off of the receiver once I mount it.  Would it be ok if I just weld it on?  I figure this is easier.  If I order the kit from GT and the barrel is not on the trunion how much will a gunsmith charge to do this correctly (headspace wise)?
Link Posted: 5/3/2003 2:11:40 PM EST
for $125, troy at inrange will hook you up.
he will rivet everything(both trunions, and trigger guard), barrel and headspace it.
all the hard work.

for the same money Jayson @IGF can do the same work.
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 9:22:12 AM EST
Headspaceing is not a huge issue.  It can be done with an arbor press or a small bottle jack press.  I recomend not useing an electro-hydraulic press because there is no "feel". A drill press is also helpful.  If you have access to those, there is no reason not to do it yourself.  As for rivets, I don't use 'em.  You can save some $ and have a great gun.
Link Posted: 5/5/2003 5:19:47 PM EST
Ekg98-If I understand your last post you are wondering about welding the trunnion to the sheet metal receiver? -I've seen 2 builds where this was done,both by a supurb craftsman,they looked good.
He even does a puddle weld on a washer that dresses to look like a rivit!
Its so tempting, grind the old rivits flat, clamp the trunnions,and let the welder do his magic.
He's agreed to do my next one.
Link Posted: 5/5/2003 7:16:04 PM EST
Bad arse!!!  That makes it cheap and easy.  The metal to weld it cost me only like 10 cents or so heh.  Now all I need is to get the barrel in the trunion.

I was just worried about compression needed.  Sounds like there is none needed.  I am not very familiar with an AK but I like a tough project.
Link Posted: 5/5/2003 8:12:56 PM EST
You can buy a small press at Harbor freight for the cost of having someone press it for you.  I'm not a fan of welding.  Too hard to "back-track" if there is a problem with the assembly.
Link Posted: 5/6/2003 3:49:28 AM EST
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