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Posted: 5/4/2003 9:46:57 AM EDT
Here are the pics. The thing is a tack driver with the PSO-1, but I was all over the place Saturday due to my contact lenses. I had to leave the range early because of them. I think I might need to have them checked, because I could barely make out the front sight post against a target at 25 yards.

Regardless, here's what it looks like. Some of the pics may not be of great quality since I downsized them so you don't spend 5 hours downloading this thread.

On my Russian AK-74 case from Tantal:



With my PSO-1 "V"





Shot of the safety:



Shot of the Russian MPK rail from Tantal. The one on my SAR-2 was 55/1000 of an inch out of spec. Can you spot the welds in this photo?



Here's a close up of the weld marks.



Now, two pics of the muzzle brake. My friend took these after I shot the gun, so I apologize that there's black stuff where you should see chrome lining.





Last but not least, the gas block was crooked. I can't tell if any machining was done since it looks so good.



I'm very satisfied with the gun (not my eye sight). Chris Butler at AK-USA took a worthless SAR and turned it into a rifle on par with those Bulgarian builds you guys have. I just need to get my damn contacts or eyes replaced, and then I can post some groups to prove it to y'all.
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 10:00:13 AM EDT
Glad to see you got some trigger time and are pleased with it. I think that the muzzlebrakes really dress them up cosmetically, in addition to their function aspect. I still don't know why they don't come with brakes from the factory. Sounds like Chris had to fix a lot of CAI's (or Romarms) handiwork. Glad it turned out for the best. Be sure to bring others into the AK fold by letting them shoot it at the range.
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 10:16:16 AM EDT
no before pics? looks like they did a great job



without the 90 degree gasblock I would of went with wood - that's just me it's a looker!
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 10:37:37 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/4/2003 10:38:09 AM EDT by Beltfed]
Looks great, my buddy had the same thing done to his SAR from Chris....back when he was doing the original powdercoat (the new one looks much better). We were at the range a few weeks ago and a guy there was like "Wow, is that a Krebs AK."

So, a little refinishing and straightening goes a long way.
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 10:56:41 AM EDT
Here's the original assness of CAI:



If you zoom in, you'll see the 1 million scratches.
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 10:58:45 AM EDT
Mao,

Excellent looking rifle. Sounds like you had a fun day at the range also. Hope we can get together at the October Knob Creek Shoot.

Take care,

KF
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 11:03:43 AM EDT
Rifle looks great! I have an AK103 coming from Chris and can't wait to see how it stacks up against my INrange built Bulgarian AK74. Oh, btw lose the contacts and go for the lasik surgery. I did and have never been happier with my sight and now shoot much better than I ever could when I wore contacts.
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 12:06:04 PM EDT
Congrats!! Looks great!
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 12:17:45 PM EDT
It looks sweet, Congrats!
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 12:26:39 PM EDT
Turned out GREAT mao.

Link Posted: 5/4/2003 12:29:24 PM EDT
So that's the powder coat? It always looked way too lumpy in the pics at their site for my taste. I guess it must have been lighting or something because that rifle looks great!
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 1:35:10 PM EDT
themao,

What type of brake did they put on?

Is it welded?

Price for the redo?

Looks great.
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 2:11:01 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/4/2003 2:17:56 PM EDT by themao]
The powder coating is nice, and it's not as glossy as the first rifles were. It's a flat black mil-spec finish. The only thing better would be to double coat the rifle via parkerizing and then some sort of paint perhaps. I think this finish will work out fine for me though.

It's a Romanian AK-74 muzzle brake and threaded front sight base. Due to the 22.5 mm threads, it's legal for me to leave the brake unpinned or welded to my knowledge. I even have a copy of the BATF letter that's posted on AK-47.net. Campybob has his rifle the same way, along with several others.

I'll list the prices per work done:

Powder Coat entire rifle (and I mean EVERYTHING): $75
Install Gordon Tech trigger: $40
Install new FSB and brake: $75

This is all you folks should have to get done on your rifles. This is where the pain comes in on my behalf for getting a lemon out of the batch of SARs that Century Arms shipped to AIM Surplus. Century would not stand behind their product either, especially for the scope rail. The scope rail was 55/1000 of an inch out of spec, so I got a Tantal MPK Russian rail. It works great, and my PSO-1 "V" locks on really tight.

Replace scope rail, weld holes, rerivet, etc.: $100
Realign gas block: $75
Install AK-74 handguard retainer: $25 (there's no wobble now, which is great).

These prices do not include the parts. You must buy your own, as I did.

What all this taught me was that if you want a nice gun, go all out and do it right the first time. This was my first AK, and I had no idea I was going to end up doing all of this, yet I was too hesistant to sell it. In retrospect, I would have hand-picked a SAR-1 and had that made into an AKM. Next, I would build a Bulgarian kit like what Campy, RotDorn and those guys did.

Edited to add: Chris Butler himself told me that this by far was one of the worse SARs he has ever seen. It turned out quite nicely though, and it goes to show that if you have either the tools, time or money, you can make any AK into a very nice shooter. I think the Romanians make OK rifles per se, but it's something about Century Arms where they just don't put this crap together properly OR the factory that produces the receivers in Romania just doesn't give a s#$t about civilian sales. Here's pictures of REAL Romanian AKs, and you'll see that they appear to be well made compared to their American counterparts:

www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=4&f=79&t=55093



No crooked gas block here:

Link Posted: 5/4/2003 2:59:35 PM EDT
I don't know if some of you have ever noticed this or not but sometimes OIL will spray out through the top cover latch cutout.

A little spray of oil everytime you fire a round.

Too much oil or oil where it doesn't belong (like on the recoil spring) can cause this problem.

I had an AK once that was SO BAD about squirting oil out the back that I had to make a little rubber shield for the inside of the cover.

It could be all that is wrong with your contacts. The oil spray is something you notice right away if you are wearing glasses.

Mike

Link Posted: 5/4/2003 3:33:07 PM EDT
Themao, nice looking rifle. I know all that you went through to get this thing up and running, and I can say it looks like it is worth it. Thats one sweet ass shootin' iron.
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 4:56:06 PM EDT
I have to say that the powder coat looks freaken awsome! The brake really makes the rifle look sharp.

You mentioned in an earlier post that you may have spent more than you originally bargained for, but your SAR-2 receiver is most likely built better than the OOW receiver.

I may get flamed for that statement, but I have never heard anyone question the quality of the Romainian receivers.

Looks great!

Link Posted: 5/4/2003 6:03:43 PM EDT

It could be all that is wrong with your contacts. The oil spray is something you notice right away if you are wearing glasses. Mike


I was having problems before I got to the range though. I think I should have turned around and got my damn glasses. I think it's my contacts, so I'll have to put them back in my Aosept cleaning kit again tonight or have them checked by the optometrist this week if they bother me again tomorrow. Yet again, it could have been due to the fact I was pretty tired from a lack of sleep. My sleeping schedule was messed up this entire week darn it.

Thanks Mike

Tracker: You may be right about the SAR-2 receiver. That may make the gun more valuable in the long run.
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 6:05:13 PM EDT
No flames here...Romanian receivers are quite nice, and I think Campy can attest to their hardness.

take care,
Tec
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 6:37:09 PM EDT
Nice rifle. It looks a lot like my Romanian AK-103 that AKUSA did for me. I get it in a few weeks. I don't have the sweet K var furniture yet though. Man this picture got me excited!
Link Posted: 5/4/2003 8:12:08 PM EDT
Since we're talking about AKUSA.....I just got a photo from Chris of a full auto AK104 he finished up.

Droooool.....

http://www.fototime.com/{1464A04F-38FD-44C2-9859-F3ACCAC3D699}/picture.JPG


Link Posted: 5/4/2003 9:26:17 PM EDT
Great Pics and Great job on your Sar2. Good to see your AK look and work like you want it!

Money well spent to get it fixed, making the owner happy! Happy Fire-blasting!
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