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View Full Version : First Rifle Build (AK-74) Questions and Advice


marmalade
09-14-2015, 9:42 AM
Hey I'm new to calguns, and I joined because I'm getting ready to start my first build (and first gun). I've done a pretty good amount of research and I know how to do most of the build so far, and I know what restrictions I have to build to spec, but I still have a few questions. My first question would be is, are there any good resources or guides for AK-74 builds? I can get a competed reciever but I'd really like to do a build from a 80% lower out of pride, and I was wondering how difficult it might be. I know people who have spot welders and drills, which seem to be the main tools required. Other than the rivet gun. Is there any guide that shows exactly what I tools I will need and work that needs to be done? Also, are there ways that I could rent a toolshop for a few hours or maybe even just the tools themselves, or alternatively can I have a gunsmith finish the parts I can't do myself.

Sorry if my post is kinda disjointed and rambling, I only got about an hour and a half of sleep last night so I'm pretty dead right now lol.


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marmalade
09-14-2015, 9:47 AM
Oh I also forgot to ask if it was possible to use the 74 lower to build out an AK-101, and if it's even worth the effort. I thought it might be a good idea because it uses the popular AR NATO round but I don't know if that's really that big of a deal. I'm mostly concerned about ammo availability and price.

I also read that .223 is compatible with the NATO round and that it's a decent hunting round. (My ideal plan is to build my AK from scratch and eventually hunt something with it - something I feel like I should experience at least once: hunting my own food, and truly experiencing and understanding the struggle.)


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SoberClurichaun
09-14-2015, 9:57 AM
I do not think people use rivet guns in AK builds. They are usually riveted with Toth jaws and Shop presses. I think you may be thinking of a different kind of river. But I'm probably wrong.

marmalade
09-14-2015, 11:39 AM
I do not think people use rivet guns in AK builds. They are usually riveted with Toth jaws and Shop presses. I think you may be thinking of a different kind of river. But I'm probably wrong.


Ah yeah, that's probably what I meant. I'm not too familiar with these kind of tools, I'm learning it all on my own, so I don't know the right names for stuff. I heard you can probably just hammer the rivets in but it's better to use the tool.


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Ak74dude
09-14-2015, 11:58 AM
If you already have a parts kit i suggest getting a receiver from 74ullc and a cold hammer forged chrome lined barrel from kvar and send it to Mario of peice of history firearms. I realize the benefit the 80% receivers and the satisfaction of a home build, but when it comes to AKs, you want to do it right. That will ensure you get the most out if your parts kit.

iluvmycolt
09-14-2015, 12:03 PM
Welcome and good luck, OP.

munkeeboi
09-14-2015, 12:08 PM
start here http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=292985 for a basic AK build

read and read again. I wouldn't suggest any shortcuts beyond what is mentioned.

not trying to deter you, but now that Build parties are dust in the wind, it'll be hard to find someone willing to lend or loan you the proper tools for all stages of the build. You might be better off buying a 100% rifle unless you are willing to buy all the tools/jigs needed.

Oldmandan
09-14-2015, 4:59 PM
youtube videos... watch them. After watching a few you should be able to decide for yourself whether you can take this on. Only a few of the rivets could "actually" just be hammered. Most of the other rivets would require some sort of bucking bar or support to "hammer" them...

Yes, a AK101 could use a 74 flat to start with. Read up on it before starting though, there are nuances with mags, bullet guides and bolts you must be prepared for...

Germz
09-14-2015, 6:16 PM
My first question would be is, are there any good resources or guides for AK-74 builds?...I'd really like to do a build from a 80% lower...

https://media4.giphy.com/media/iGNiqAuwG9dwQ/200.gif

Just kidding. ;) But don't call them lowers, love and learn the parts of a firearm! I would also try and locate someone who has (successfully) done AK builds and seek mentorship or advice. Basic shop tools and a some specialized ones will make your life easy. You're looking at around 700-1200 in tools alone.

Also here's a list of tools (basic and...er, advanced?) from another thread:

AK-47 Build Tools

New AK Builder Flat Bending Jig 1mm
Barrel Press Kit 1" ram
5/32" Screw Machine Drill Bits
#16 Screw Machine Drill Bits
5mm & 7mm Reamer Set
Trunnion Rivet Hole Drilling Fixture
Trigger Guard Riveting Jig
Spot Welder Tong
7.62x39 GO/NO-GO Headspace Gauges



Toth Bolt Cutter Style Rivet Tool
AK Long Rivet Tool


2" C-Clamps
1" C-Clamps
Automatic Center Punch
Punch Set
4lb. Drilling Hammer
16 oz. Rubber Mallet
12-Ton Shop Press
Bench Mount Drill Press
120 Volt Spot Welder


Mapp Torch Kit
15/64" Drill Bit
Dremel EZ Lock Mandrel & Cutoff Wheel Kit
Dremel 200 Series
Steel Wool
Propane Grill

Blasting Equipment:

33 Gal. Air Compressor


Blast Cabinet
Aluminum Oxide Blast Media


Parkerizing Equipment:

Park Tank



Parkerizing Solution


Thermometer

Capybara
09-14-2015, 6:20 PM
OP, if you decide to forge ahead with the build, do yourself a big favor and buy Calgunner Nicoroshi's books:

http://www.amazon.com/Build-Your-Own-Headspace-Population/dp/1939812321/ref=pd_bxgy_14_text_y

http://www.amazon.com/Build-Your-Own-AK-Building/dp/193981233X/ref=pd_bxgy_14_text_y

As someone who has only built one AK, you want a shop press. It will be great if you can borrow a spot welder and drill press. Even with borrowing those, you will end up spending considerably more to build an AK than buying a new one but it is more gratifying. With 5.45x39 ammo almost dried up, why would you build in that caliber? Why not build an AK47? Caliber is still available cheap and in huge amounts.

Oldmandan
09-14-2015, 7:34 PM
Even with borrowing those, you will end up spending considerably more to build an AK than buying a new one but it is more gratifying.

^Agreed + there are models you cannot buy here, for example I've never seen a AMD or Crutch Folder in a CA gun store...


With 5.45x39 ammo almost dried up, why would you build in that caliber? Why not build an AK47? Caliber is still available cheap and in huge amounts.

AK101 is 5.56

Germz
09-14-2015, 9:46 PM
With 5.45x39 ammo almost dried up, why would you build in that caliber? Why not build an AK47? Caliber is still available cheap and in huge amounts.

Here's an AK-74 I did with a 5.56 barrel and converted some AR PMAGs to work with it.
http://i.imgur.com/7blMBvE.png

marmalade
09-14-2015, 10:33 PM
5.45x39 is dried up? I was under the impression that it was pretty cheap and available. I'm small of stature so that's why I didn't want to build an AK47, I've read and heard that the recoil is pretty brutal. Also I just like the 74. Like I said I wouldn't mind building out an AK 101, since it uses NATO rounds, but I heard 5.45x39 was cheaper. Also it would probably be less of a hassle in terms of finding parts I imagine.


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Ak74dude
09-15-2015, 12:17 PM
5.45x39 is dried up? I was under the impression that it was pretty cheap and available. I'm small of stature so that's why I didn't want to build an AK47, I've read and heard that the recoil is pretty brutal. Also I just like the 74. Like I said I wouldn't mind building out an AK 101, since it uses NATO rounds, but I heard 5.45x39 was cheaper. Also it would probably be less of a hassle in terms of finding parts I imagine.


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Conmercial ammo is still pretty cheap. Most of it can be found for about 24c a round. The ammo that is dried up is the 7n6 surplus and even that hasnt completely dried up yet. There is still some out there that can be had for about 20c a round.

About building a 7.62x39 example...the recoil is not brutal by any means. Very mild. This is a good option as there are a lot of AKM kits out there and Arms of America has new Polish barrels. You want to avoid using an American barrel if at all possible.

Germz
09-15-2015, 5:11 PM
I've read and heard that the recoil is pretty brutal.

This teenage child disagrees...
V1FQKWqNJvM

dtrump
09-15-2015, 11:15 PM
If you do build get a Bulgarian kit and an akbuilder 5.56 barrel made to work with it. Then stock up on a few nice and expensive bulgy 223 mags